Daventry based distributor Shebang has given 30 days’ notice to 84 retail staff as it looks to convert its entire Go Mobile estate to franchise format
Shebang has told staff working in its 40 Go Mobile stores they must either join its Purple Partnership franchise programme, or face redundancy.
Eighty-four staff have been given a 30-day notice to decide if they wish to run their store themselves as part of its franchise programme.
If not, staff will be offered positions within the business at other franchise stores, or a redundancy package.
Shebang currently has 73 Purple Partnership franchise stores in the UK, with five new sites opening this month, in Aberystwyth and Brecon in Wales, Bedminster in Bristol, Cleveland in Teesside and Redcar in North Yorkshire.
Six more stores based in Blackpool, Cardiff, Glossop in Derbyshire, Seaham in Durham, Shirley in Southampton and St Austell in Cornwall will also open shortly.
Shebang expects to have 140 Purple Partnership stores open by the end of the year, with 200 in operation by 2013.
Group managing director for Shebang Technologies Iain Humphrey (pictured) said: “We are moving all our stores over to full franchise. It’s pointless continuing with two models, with two sets of management and all the associated costs that come with it.
“We have given notice to 84 staff and they have been notified of the changes. We have not forced anyone over to franchising, so we’re quite happy to leave a few stores closed and ready for franchising.
“It is our intention to move it over to one model, but we are speaking to affected staff and also offering other roles within the Shebang Group.
“We’re not looking to make too many redundant. This move has been in the offing for a while and we have now reached a point in the programme where it has grown to a point that this decision has to be made.”